Gandhi Jayanti Lecture
October 2, 2010

The Center for India Studies partnered with Florida Museum of Photographic Arts to celebrate Gandhi’s birth anniversary on Oct 2, 2010.  Professor Michael Gibbons,  Department of Government and International Affairs, University of South Florida gave a talk on “The Moral Strength of Nonviolence” to an intimate audience at the museum. Contrasting Gandhi’s freedom movement based on ahimsa (nonviolence), satyagraha (truth-force), and swaraj (a concept that combined inward freedom and external non-dependency) with mass political movements of the early 20th c. led by Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, and Mao Tse Tung, the lecture noted Gandhi’s influence on  Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, Dalai Lama and Vaclav Havel, as well as the influences on Gandhi, notably Hindu and Jain philosophy, the Sermon on the Mount, Tolstoy and Thoreau.  Dr. Gibbons also speculated on the marginality of Gandhi within the field of Political Science in America, offering as reasons (among others) the prevailing Eurocentric and US-centric views on democracy and secularism, the Cold War, and the “realist” emphasis on power and violence.

Total Health: Research Perspectives in Modern Medicine, Yoga, Ayurveda
September 24, 2010

The international conference “Total Health: Research Perspectives in Modern Medicine, Yoga,  Ayurveda” was held at Orlando, Florida, Sept 24 – 26, 2010 . Organized by Hindu University of America, Orlando, FL (College of Yoga and Ayurvedic Sciences division) and VYASA Global Health Foundation (India), it was supported by the  Department of AYUSH – Ministry of Health, government of India undertaking and the Center for India Studies, University of South Florida, Tampa.

The 3-day conference brought together well known scientists, researchers and educators from yoga and ayurveda and diverse disciplines of medicine. The conference presented evidence based papers to show the need to factor in body, mind and spirit in developing treatment for various diseases. Researchers presented their findings demonstrating accelerated recovery process when treatments combined ancient techniques of yoga, pranayam, meditation and Ayurveda in conjunction with modern medicine.

USF Center for India Studies Celebrates One Year Anniversary
September 12, 2010

The Center for India Studies celebrated its one year anniversary with friends, dignitaries, and a special multimedia performance, Chitram: A Portrait of India; it was attended by chief guest Sanjiv Arora, Consul General of India, Houston. Directed by artist-in-residence, Kanniks Kannikeswaran, Chitram took spectators on a journey through time, documenting five millennia of cultural history through choreographed dance sequences amplified by a sophisticated chorus of singers, and an illuminating commentary with photographs of India’s ancient temple architecture, landscapes, and diverse people. Alongside members of the Tampa Bay Indian community, more than 40 USF students performed, volunteered and helped with the production.

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Center for India Studies 2009-2010 Annual Report
May 1, 2010

Highlights from the Center for India Studies annual report include:

  • The Center for India Studies formed three advisory committees for students, faculty, and the Tampa Bay community.
  • The Center is hosting Artist-in-Residence and composer, Kanniks Kannikeswaran. He will produce two musical/dance/theater productions: Chitram: A Portrait of India and Shanti: A Journey of Peace.
  • The CIS arranged three fund-raiser dinners raising a total of $11,728.
  • The Center’s 2009-2010 Lecture Series included many guest speakers including; Dr. Jai Menon, Vice-President of Global University Programs and Vice-Chair of the IBM Academy of Technology and Dr. Chandrika Kaul, Vice-President, South Asian Studies Association.
  • University engagement activities including Diwali and Republic Day Celebrations, a faculty luncheon, and additional activities.

View the annual report below.
Center for India Studies 2009 – 2010 Annual Report

Dr.Brian Stoddart on Land, Water, Language and Politics in Andhra Pradesh since 1850
April 30, 2010

Professor Brian Stoddart reviewed the evolution of Andhra Pradesh in order to explain the present political and cultural challenges manifested recently in the demand for a separate Telangana.  Dr. Stoddart explained the reasons behind such demands and engaged the audience in an interesting conversation regarding the controversial topic. This event was co-sponsored by the Office of the Provost.

Dr. Subrata Mitra on Citizenship in India
March 30, 2010

Talking about citizenship as a valued resource whose wide dispersal across the population enhances the resilience of a political system, Dr. Subrata Mitra also discussed legal entitlement to citizenship under the laws of the land as a necessary condition, that does not suffice for the individual to feel the full power and potentials of citizenship. Other complementary factors such as rights, capacity, sentiments, and a sense of moral obligation that enhance the sense of citizenship were also brought up.

Professor Mitra received a Ph.D. from the University of Rochester, NY, in Political Science.  His research deals with democratization in South Asia, the interaction of traditional values and modern institutions, the role of identity and religion in Indian politics, as well as the functioning of political parties and institutions in South Asia.